Tarantino, 1600s-style, at Blackfriars
John Ford’s re-imagining of Romeo and Juliet leads audiences deep into a story of passion, lust, vengeance, greed, incest, and murder featuring an unlikely pair of lovers, an ex-girlfriend bent on revenge, the loyal sidekick, the comic character that comes to a tragic ending- all wrapped into one sexy story with a bloody and shocking ending.
After almost 400 years, ‘Tis Pity She’s a Whore’s tale of forbidden love remains controversial. Audiences will be on the edge of their seats from the preshow music (the company’s rendition of Lady Gaga’s Bad Romance) to the final scene, entranced by the suspense of what will happen and struggling with their own inner conflict.
Director Jim Warren compares ‘Tis Pity She’s a Whore to “a Tarantino movie: violent/funny, dramatic/comic, full of smart characters with great dialogue…ASC Costumer Erin M. West has created an incredible, modern, vibrant, tasty costume design for [the show] that makes it simultaneously a world unto itself, something identifiably familiar to today’s audience, and something that fits perfectly with the early modern amazing language/text/script Ford created in the Jacobean era.”
When interviewed about the play, Eugene Douglas (who plays the double-crossing Vasques) says, “I call it our cult movie, our indie movie, our midnight movie, because it’s outrageous and it comes out of nowhere. Sex, violence, incest, c’mon!” and Patrick Earl (who plays the star crossed Giovanni) compares ‘Tis Pity Shes a Whore to “a graphic novel. As odd and maybe unsettling as the subject matter is, the play is hilarious. Even to the end, Giovanni covered in blood, still cracking jokes. It’s very, very funny. It’s almost a dark comedy funny. It never ceases to amaze me, the jokes that are in there.”
Tickets for ‘Tis Pity She’s a Whore can be purchased by calling 1.877.Much.Ado (540.682.4236), at the Blackfriars Playhouse Box Office on 10 South Market Street in Staunton, or online at AmericanShakespeareCenter.com. Ticket prices start at $22 for general admission and $34 for reserved seating. Residents of Staunton, Waynesboro or Augusta County can take advantage of $18 local rush tickets on Wednesdays and Thursdays. Student and AAA discounts also are available.